In case anyone missed the announcement, something very significant occurred in Lubbock, Texas, the other day, and it will have a serious impact on the promotion of agriculture for years to come. Bayer CropScience is now the primary sponsor of the American Museum of Agriculture. The sponsorship gives the museum a much needed boost in its efforts to finish construction of the facility, and it will be a major step forward in the promotion of the U.S. cotton industry. The official name of the facility has also been changed to the “Bayer Museum of Agriculture.”
For anyone who is familiar with this museum, you know that industry leaders such as Dan Taylor and Curtis Griffith have been at the forefront in fundraising and the early stages of construction. I have visited the museum several times, and it’s remarkable how much progress has occurred in just a couple of years. You cannot find a more impressive collection of historic ag equipment.
The museum was seeking a corporate partner, and Bayer’s decision to join in this effort means that the next stage of construction will occur on schedule. The expanded museum will open its doors in late spring or early summer of 2014. Included in the newest stage of construction will be a Bayer CropScience exhibit along with a “Major Crops” display focused on corn, cotton, peanuts, rice, sorghum, soybeans, sunflowers and wheat. Other attractions will feature an interactive farming game for visitors from the fourth grade to adults. As if that weren’t enough, look for a new gift shop and reception desk, administrative areas for special events, research and training.
The museum is located on a spacious 25-acre site on the rim of the Yellow House Canyon in Lubbock. As I always like to say, this is a win-win for all parties. All of agriculture will benefit from the media attention at the museum, and visitors to Lubbock will have yet another destination to learn about ag’s importance to the Texas High Plains and the entire country.
If a first-time visitor to the museum didn’t have any knowledge of ag’s importance to the U.S. economy, his perspective will change after one visit. Seeing is believing.
Congratulations to Bayer and the museum’s leaders.